The region of Ayrshire covers a huge explanse of land which is littered with castles, many of which have played an imprtant role in the countries history. Some of the earlier castles may be a bit tumble down, but there is nothing more authentic than seeing the scars of the battles fought 100's of years ago. Others are glorious monuments to the wealth and status of influential families who built them in more recent times (only a few hundred years ago!).
Your hosts will be happy to recommend the best castles to visit in their area
Red sandstone castle at the foot of Goatfell mountain on the Isle of Arran. Once home of the Dukes of Hamilton. The Castle is closed for renovation in 2017, there are external tours (1 April to 31 October). The Country Park is open daily all year from 9.30am until sunset. Admission charges apply. National Trust for Scotland.
Near Largs - Dating from the 13th century and still lived in by the present Earl and his features of historical interest. Admission charges apply.
Near Maybole. Principal seat of the Kennedy family from 1759, now cared for by the National Trust for Scotland. Magnificent rooms overlooking the sea, including Eisenhower's private office. A masterpiece of architecture designed by Robert Adam with a famous Oval Staircase. 600 acre estate with deer park, walled garden, swan pond, adventure playground, auditorium with video and exhibition, restaurant and cafe, gift shop, book shop, etc. Castle open daily from 1 April to 1 November from 10.30am with last entry at 4pm. Admission charges apply. The Country Park is open daily all year. National Trust for Scotland.